An Israeli firm has developed a way of commercially growing the rare Morel, or Morchella, mushroom.

Gavish-Galilee Bio Applications developed a strictly controlled process combining compost and climate to produce hothouse Morels comparing favourably to wild-grown in three to four weeks.

Earlier American attempts produced mushrooms inferior in colour, size, and aroma. Gavish's technology considers one mushroom's influence on others: generating heat and decreasing oxygen.

Hollow with maze-like pitted tops, Morels are rich and sweetly nutty, growing in forests and special conditions along the equator. Each year, 150 tons of the dried delicacy is sold worldwide, fetching up to US$400 per kilogram. Gavish Morels are expected to be marketed next year.